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IMDMA – Relocation

The New IMDMA: Can I Relocate Once my Allocation Judgment is Entered?
The revised Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) becomes effective on January 1, 2016. One of the major changes to the act centers on whether a party can relocate and what steps they must take. A full outline of the new Relocation section of the IMDMA (to be codified as 750 ILCS 5/609.2) is provided below as a flow chart, but here are some key questions any party needs to consider when trying to relocate:

Do you currently have equal or the majority of parenting time?
Under the new Relocation statute, only a parent who has the majority of parenting time or a party who has been allocated equal parenting time may seek to relocate with a minor child. (750 ILCS 5/609.2(b))

Are you trying to move across state lines?
If so, you may move up to 25 miles away from your child’s current primary residence without providing any notice or seeking further court action.

If you are trying to move more than 25 miles away, you must provide at least 60 days’ written notice before the relocation unless such notice is impracticable or otherwise ordered by the court. This notice, must include, at a minimum:
1. The intended date of your relocation;
2. The address of your intended new residence, if known; and
3. The length of time the relocation will last, if the relocation is not for an indefinite or permanent period of time.

If the non-relocating parent signs the notice you provide and you file notice with the court, relocation will be allowed without further Court action. If the non-relocating parent objects or fails to sign the notice, you must file a Petition seeking permission to relocate.

Are you trying to move somewhere else in Illinois? Is your child’s current primary residence located in the County of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, or Will?
If your child’s current primary residence is located in one of the six above-mentioned counties, you can move wherever you want in a 25-mile radius without any court action. If you want to move outside the 25-mile radius, you will need to provide notice as outlined in the above-section. And again, if the non-relocating parent fails to sign the notice or objects to the relocation, you will need to Petition the Court.

Are you trying to move somewhere else in Illinois? Is your child’s current primary residence outside the six counties listed above?
If your child’s current primary residence is not located in one of the six above-mentioned counties, you can move wherever you want in a 50-mile radius without any court action. If you want to move outside the 50-mile radius, you will need to provide notice as outlined in the above-section. And again, if the non-relocating parent fails to sign the notice or objects to the relocation, you will need to Petition the Court.

Still Confused? Maybe this flowchart will help clear things up:

Interested in speaking to an experienced divorce attorney? Hurst, Robin & Kay, LLC can help you explore the different options for divorce, including traditional litigation, Collaborative Divorce and mediation. Let’s talk about it today at 312.782.2400.

An Associate at HRK, Stephanie Tang joined the firm after working for three different Judges who currently preside over family law cases in three Illinois county courts. She graduated from Northwestern University with honors in Legal Studies and went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from University of Illinois College of Law.